On multi-core CPU systems, Windows 7's task manager used to display a separate utilization graph for each core unit:

Windows 7 task manager

On Windows 8 the task manager looks much fancier, and yet it shows a single graph for a multi-core cpu and there is no obvious way to show other cores:

enter image description here

Did Microsoft remove this feature or is it buried somewhere in the settings?

Update: Okay, it's really that simple. It turned out that I could not switch the graph into multi-core mode as the 'logical processors' menu item was disabled. Disabled because I was running Windows 8 in a virtual machine that by default had limited the number of available processors to 1. After changing the setting and rebooting I've got new graph options. Thanks everyone!


To see individual graphs, "Change graph to" > "Logical processors"

enter image description here

The task manager can also show a heat map of the cores to better show what they are doing (instead of having tiny graphs). This means that if you have a large number of cores (eg. 160), it will be easier to interpret the data:

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More tips on using the task manager can be found at 8 Windows 8 Task Manager Tips


  • Thanks, @ronalchn. It turned out I had 1 core in the first place (Virtual machine). I have updated the question with the explanation. – Vladimir Sinenko Oct 27 '12 at 8:47
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    Just curious, but how do you have 8 Physical Processors running on (what seems to be) a regular windows 8 system? Assuming you're not using Server 2012 then doesn't the maximum amount of physical processors cap out at 2? – Ben Franchuk Mar 27 '15 at 15:14
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    @BenFranchuk money. And lots of it. – hunterboerner May 31 '15 at 19:10
  • @hunterboerner that's the truth. – Ben Franchuk May 31 '15 at 22:50
  • Damn. I want this machine. – galinette Dec 17 '15 at 16:37

right click roughly where "cpu" is shown. a submenu opens, then you click "change graph" to show "logical processors".


You can follow the following steps to see in an alternative way screenshot

  • Or start the Resource Monitor by opening the Run dialog and entering resmon. – Martin Aug 31 '18 at 11:28

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